Saturday, February 25, 2012

This week at the library; or, Cutting back...I hope

Monday. Have I mentioned recently how much I love my vendor, BWI? Soooo easy to use, can always quickly get in touch with someone, and they fix things asap! Even when the mistake is my fault!
9-1 Desk time. It might have been a little quieter than usual since many people assume we're closed on President's Day, but someone brought over a large number of homeless people to spend the day in the library, so it was rather busy.
1-5 Staff meetings. We determined, among other things, that we have set an impossible pace and it is time to cut back programming and focus.

Tuesday Planning. Book bundles. Cleaning off my desk (layers dating back several weeks and not a clear spot in sight) Putting together minutes from the previous day's staff meetings. Planning. Took books to preschool. Finished off the day with a couple hours at kindergarten registration. A little different this year because it's only 4k, not five year old registration and I only stayed an hour and a half, not the usual three hours. Trying to stick to my New Year's resolution of not working 12 hour days anymore (have only 2 so far this year). One of the highlights of the evening was when I met a woman who looked vaguely familiar...and she turned out to be the mom of one of my storytime regulars (her babysitter brings her) a little girl so bright she sparkles! Her mom said she sings our storytime songs, especially Elizabeth Mitchell's Sunny Day, at home all the time. Awwwww.

Wednesday Huge group again at Preschool Interactive! Will hopefully make up for next year, when 4k is going to five days a week and my entire storytime group will disappear *sigh*. After storytime I had an Early Head Start group. Only three families, and two did not speak English, so the Head Start teacher translated. I picked some different books to make it easier to translate and we:
  • read Where is Tippy Toes by Betsy Lewin
  • read Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson
  • sang five green and speckled frogs
  • read Little Dog Lost by Carnesi
  • sang Sunny Day
  • made the peacock crafts from Preschool Interactive
  • and they brought their lunch. I also talked about library services and showed them our Spanish collections.
Lego Club was fairly large, about 40 people. We are running out of Legos! I don't think we have less than when we started, I think a lot of the kids have started to form friendships and build collaboratively, and they're all building larger edifices.

Thursday Came in early b/c my dentist appt. ended early. Spent all my extra time coming and going as I tried to run errands but had to keep coming back for things I had forgotten.
   I like the idea of the Elephant and Piggie Kids' Club but I'm having a lot of problems with this program. When I revamped the Preschool Interactive, I spent several months promoting it, doing marketing, reworking it, and make storytime plans. I only spent a few weeks on E&P and so few people are aware of it. I also have no backlog of plans and am finding myself planning the program a few hours before I do it. Plus, I don't think I have the time to do this program as well. I am afraid I will have to cancel it after April. On the other hand, the parents don't seem to care, they just like coming and hanging out and I've gotten ok numbers. I planned today's about an hour beforehand and we:
  • sang Sunny Day by Elizabeth Mitchell
  • Read Watch me throw the ball by Mo Willems
  • Limelight Larry by Leigh Hodkinson
  • sang Cat goes fiddle-i-fee with my flannelboard (I need to tell parents to keep clapping even when I stop to put up the pieces!)
  • read The wolf and the seven little kids (I wimped out and just said that the wolf was never seen again. I had some very sensitive parents and younger kids)
  • read Chopsticks by Amy Rosenthal
  • made button people
  • played in the puppet theater
Then it was a busy evening with Daisy scouts, new books, and Amazon orders. And a very snowy, slushy drive home.

Friday More snow. Lots of snow. But that didn't deter anyone from coming to Open Storyhour. When there's no school, Miss Pattie doesn't come, since she works through the school district (except in summer, which is a different thing). I have observed that we get a lot of older kids on these no school days, and I got tired of the endless "where's Miss Pattie?" questions (despite telling people weeks ahead of time that she would be gone) so I'm going to try making it clear that this is NOT me being a poor substitute for Pattie's Toddler's 'n' Books, but a whole different storytime program for all ages. However, the only thing certain about programming on no school days is that nothing is certain, and six inches of thick, wet snow did not help. We had about 20 people, very disparate ages - grade school kids from Elephant and Piggie that I invited (who got bored with the younger stories and wandered out) and very young toddlers and babies from the regular storytime (who got wiggly with the longer stories and went out to play. We:
  • sang Boots by Laurie Berkner
  • read I will not read this book by Cece Meng
  • read I want my hat back by Jon Klassen
  • did a flannelboard of Five little snowmen
  • read Kitten's Winter by Eugenie Fernandes
  • read Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson
  • sang Sunny Day by Elizabeth Mitchell
Then I worked three hours on the desk. Then I did our sewing workshop. Only four girls had signed up, but about five more had promised to come. We ended up with three girls and a boy (who refused to be photographed or have his presence recorded in any way). There was a lot of variety in the sewing ability, but it worked out pretty well. One thing I did that made things a lot easier was use darning needles and embroidery thread instead of regular needles and thread. It worked fine b/c we were sewing on knit material like hats and on flannel and was easier for the kids to see and manipulate. Finished up and left about 5:30

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